A movie tour in Barcelona, 3,2,1, Action!

There is so much to discover in the city of Barcelona, its beautiful streets hide stories and secrets that most of its visitors and citizens have yet to explore.

Without knowing, you have most likely walked by a scene spot of a famous film production, since the Catalan capital has been the stage for several movies. Its modernist architecture, especially that of Antoni Gaudi, has called the attention of famous filmmakers who have decided to shoot their movies in Barcelona.

[Get to know more of Gaudi’s architecture that surprises the world in this other article]

If you are traveling to Barcelona, you are just beginning to plan your trip, or live in the city and are looking for something new to discover, you will love this article. Let’s walk together on the streets and plazas that have been immortalized by famous scenes on the big screen.

Traveling in Barcelona through the big screen

All About My Mother
Director: Pedro Almodóvar

Winner of an Oscar to the best foreign movie in 1999, was filmed in several spots around Barcelona while its main character roams around the city in search of her son`s father. Some of the most emblematic places you will surely recognize are: Sagrada Familia, The Colombus Statue, Palau de la Musica (Music Palace), and the Montjuic Cemetery. This movie shows how dymanic is Barcelona.

Vicky, Cristina, Barcelona
Director: Woody Allen

Fotograma Vicky Cristina Barcelona

The fact that this famous movie by Woody Allen puts Barcelona as one of its main characters put the city on the spotlight. This homage to Barcelona by the film director shows a vision of the city that is not exactly the same one we all know about. On the screen you will see some of Barcelona´s most beautiful shots and city views while it takes you to very picturesque places such as Park Guell (UNESCO Patrimony of Humanity), the Casa Fuster Hotel, Restaurant Els 4 Gats (Read more about this restaurant here), La Pedrera, Plaza San Felip Neri, and the famous Rambla.

L´Auberge Espagnol (Pot Luck or the Spanish Apartment)
Director: Cédric Klapisch

This french movie talks about the story of a young french man who travel to Barcelona for his last university year through the Erasmus Program. Portraying a very multicultural, globalized and fun city, shows us its cultural richness while it takes us to places like the Raval neighborhood, MACBA, Barceloneta neighborhood, Park Guell, Plaza Catalunya and Plaza Real.

[Barceloneta is not the only beach in Barcelona, read all about our beaches here]

Perfume
Director: Tom Tykwer

Premiered in 2006 and based on the homonym novel by Patrick Suskind. Set in France in the XVII century, part of the movie was shot in Barcelona and other cities of Catalunya. This great cinematographic production tells the story of a young serial assassin who killed women in search of the perfect scent. Some of the stages picked are the streets of the Gothic Neighborhood, Poble Espanyol, Plaza de la Merce, Horta Laberynth, and Plaza Sant Felip Neri, where the character executes a murder.

The Machinist
Director: Brad Anderson

A psychological thriller filmed in Barcelona and its surroundings in the year 2004. Although it is set in California, the director chose the grisly magnetism of the coast of Badalona, the gloomy basements of the Hospital del Torax de Terrasa, the mysterious Tibidabo, and the industrial polygon of Sabadell, to stage the disturbing hallucinations of its main character. Another very well kept secret of this movie is that it used the Barcelona sewer network for some of its scenes. This movie is quiet remembered because the main actor, Christian Bale, had to lose 30 kilograms to be able to interpret his role.

Yo, El Vaquilla
Director: José Antonio de la Loma

A jewel of the “Spanish Kinky Films” representative of a place in time and a social class that existed and will always exist in Barcelona. Tells the story of a Spanish criminal of gypsy ethnicity, Juan José Moreno Cuenca, from Badalona, Barcelona. The filming of this movie took place in Barcelona, Gava, Casteldefels, Lloret de Mar, Vilanova I la Geltru, Girona, and Perpignan (France).

Biutiful
Director: Alejandro Gonzáles Iñarritu

Movie Biutiful filmed at Barcelona

This story set in Barcelona speaks of a man that finds out he has cancer and tries to straighten his life before dieing. Being a dramatic and dark movie, it does not show the happy side of our city, situating us in the Side B of Barcelona, for which they picked to film at the suburb neighborhoods of Santa Coloma and Badalona.

3 Steps Above Heaven (2010) and I Want You (2012)
Director: Fernando Gonzáles Molina

Fotograma Tengo Ganas de Ti Barcelona

The Spanish version of an Italian love story, that chose the romantic city of Barcelona for the adaptation of the novel by Federico Moccia. Throughout the movie we can watch illegal car races at the Port of Barcelona, visit the Vallcarca Bridge where the famous quote appears “Tú y yo a tres metros sobre el cielo” (You and me at 3 meters above heaven), or get to know Babi’s house at the residential neighborhood of Sarriá (where our One Bedroom Apartment is located). We will also get to see as well the famous discotheque of Razzmatazz.

On the second film, I Want You, the place that stands out the most in the movie is the Bunkers of Carmel, a mostly unknown and hidden place, that now, unfortunately, is suffering from the wear of the massification of the visits and the lack of access control.

At the Bunkers of Carmel you can enjoy some of the best views in Barcelona, so we highly recommend you visit this spot. 

REC
Director: Jaume Balagueró and Paco Plaza

One of the Spanish horror movies with most success in the last years. A false documentary that turns into tragedy that was mostly recorded in the building located at Rambla 34. Besides this building, REC also used the underground sewage network of Barcelona as stage of its impacting scenes.

The Last Days
Director: David Pastor and Alex Pastor

From our list, this movie pictures the most fictional Barcelona that we have seen. We will see a completely destroyed city, filmed mostly at Via Laietana, Balmes street, Torre Agbar, Arc de Triumf, and the Santa Maria del Mar Cathedral.

So next time you are looking for something different to do in Barcelona or for your next visit to the Catalan city, do not forget to go around the places that have been stages for mayor films, inspire yourself and live Barcelona as if you were in the movie.

Now you know, if you are making plans to travel to Barcelona in the future we invite you to make a reservation with us on our website www.sweetbcnapartments.com , we will be very happy to give you more tips so that you can write your own movie story in our city.

If you know more movies that we should have included in this article, share them with us!

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